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1990 200TDI - Freezing cold here in the US!

Discussion in 'Defender 90 / 110 / 130' started by limeypete33, Jan 22, 2019.

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  1. limeypete33

    limeypete33 Member

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    So I imported a 1990 Defender 90 with a 200TDI into the states - all original as far as I can tell....

    Anyway I don't have a heck of a lot of experience with these vehicles, so at this point I just need some pointers. It's been extremely cold here in the US, around -10C on some mornings. Needless to say the Landy does not do a good job of keeping me warm.

    Without doing anything too crazy, I ordered a radiator muff just to see if it can get up to temp quicker. I certainly don't want to do anything like install a diesel fired heater like I have seen some people do - that seems a tad beyond me.

    What I do need help with is mainly just understanding if everything is working right and defenders are just uncomfortable vehicles in the cold, or if there is something wrong with mine. My question at this point is if the cooling fan is meant to be running all the time. It certainly looks like it is. It's not an electric fan and as you can see by the image it's driven off of a belt.

    I am just wondering because if I pretty much get the the thing up to temp, and then park it and idle, the temp comes down. So it's not really getting up to temp and staying there. If the fan is supposed to click off to allow it to try and maintain a proper temp then I can see that being something I need to fix.

    Otherwise, does anyone have any tips other than to wrap up warm?
     

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  2. Gmacz

    Gmacz Well-Known Member

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    Poor heaters and fan runs all the time. You can remove it and fit electric but easier to wear warmer land rover 90 clothes. Gloves and woolly hat work well.
     
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  3. limeypete33

    limeypete33 Member

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    Good to know! I just wanted to make sure nothing was broken. I will get used to the ice in the drivers footwell for a while!
     
  4. Al2O3

    Al2O3 Well-Known Member

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    You could check your thermostat. If it's stuck open like this
    IMG_5786.JPG
    Then the engine will not be able to regulate it's temperature.
    Your engine is a big block of cast iron, along with the cylinder head, gearbox and transfer box there is a lot of metal to absorb, transmit and dissipate the heat energy. Also, the fan is driven by a viscous coupling. It runs all of the time, but as the engine warms up so does the viscous coupling and the coupling then slips less and so cools even more! I still have my viscous fan fitted, but those who take them off and fit electric fans often report that they never hear them kicking in! The Defender was designed to operate under tough conditions, while potentially towing heavy loads, and not over heat. Put that with a pretty basic heater system, little to no insulation in the cabin, door seals that allow gale force winds to blow through and you can see that the focus is not on keeping the driver warm :rolleyes:
    In short, they are very cold vehicles to be in during the winter.
    If your temperature needle drops significantly at idle, I would be checking the thermostat isn't stuck open.
     
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  5. limeypete33

    limeypete33 Member

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    Great - I will check the thermostat. My Haynes manual isn't a great help, whereabouts is the thermostat housing on the 200TDI?
     
  6. Al2O3

    Al2O3 Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]
    In there.
    Edit
    I hasten to point out that I have a 300Tdi, so that pic is not mine.
     
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  7. owas

    owas Well-Known Member

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    Plenty you can do to make it better, mine can get unbearably hot.

    Here's a few things I've got -
    -Heated seat cover
    -Thick one peice rubber matting
    -Full insulation (mine is a army rad haz kit)
    -A curtain on the rear bulkhead to keep the warmth in the cabin.
    -Bilge fan in the heater air intake to blow more air through
    -diesel heater
    -new heater matrix,cable on top of heater box adjusted properly, gaps sealed.
    -radiator muff .. the only time I've ever heard my electric fan kick in was when I forgot to open the flap.

    I don't like being cold :rolleyes:

    Maybe a block heater would be a good idea?
     
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  8. limeypete33

    limeypete33 Member

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    All good suggestions! I saw a lower hose heater that looked pretty easy to install, I may get one of those and some seat heaters! I have a radiator muff on it's way!
     
  9. Thor 1950

    Thor 1950 Well-Known Member

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    a piece of cardboard will be cheaper and work just as well. also check out your heater core that could be fooked. A good radiator repair shop can take care of it and possible make you a new one. also flushing out the block and radiator will help also
     
  10. Trench Rat

    Trench Rat Well-Known Member

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    Even my series gets pretty toasty and i never use the heater, i'm thinking maybe due to the fact that there's no insulation between myself and the engine?
     
  11. Dippypud

    Dippypud Never Knowingly Understood

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    Most heater blowers leak the blown air everywhere but out of the vents ...

    maybe something to leave til you are more familiar with taking the truck apart ... ;)

    tis only gaps in the blower case that does it, fixed with the usual duct tape and hope ...

    The radiator may need flushing through as Thor says, but also the heater matrix itself ... a job for summer

    A feed sack or cardbord sheet infront of the lower rad will help it warm quicker, but if the flow through it is restricted it won't help much ...
     
  12. tottot

    tottot Well-Known Member

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    The 200tdi is known for running cool, in the winter [ not below freezing most of the time ] I run mine with a plastic coverd cardboard sheet covering the lower half of the rad.I have an electric fan but it never comes on in the winter so you can safely remove the fan in the cold weather. Rad muff's tend not to work well as they tend to be mounted to far in front allowing air to come in underneath. As others have said check thermostat.
     
  13. doriz

    doriz Well-Known Member

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    Great vehicle to have and plenty you can do as pointed out, those that have heat suffer with condensation. I find North Face and the Defender are best of friend during any cold snap, and unlike the Freelander the Defender thrives on tough conditions :D
     
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